New study: COVID-19 patients can remain infectious for up to 37 days

Coronavirus

(WTVO) — People who contract COVID-19 and recover keep the virus in their respiratory tract for as long as 37 days, according to a new study.

According to the medical publication The Lancet, the study suggests they could remain infectious for weeks.

Doctors in China first detected the virus’ RNA in patients for a median of 20 days after they became infected, the report shows.

The novel coronavirus has been declared a global pandemic by the World Heath Organization, and has spread to 118 countries and infected about 125,000 people since it was first discovered in Wuhan, China in December.

Currently, the recommended self quarantine time period is 14 days, but the study suggests patients could remain infectious long after their symptoms fade.

By comparison, the study says, only a third of SARS patients still had the virus in their respiratory tract after four weeks.

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